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Charity Titan Zip Wire Challenge – Part Three

Part Three

In the last edition of my blog, we had reached the point where we were waiting with mounting excitement to be called forward for our team’s turn.

Suddenly it was time to kit up and venture upwards.  We were given red overalls.  Mine seemed to have been made for someone twelve inches taller than myself, so I found I was wiping out my footprints as I walked.  We had hard hats and goggles.  Trying to fit the goggles over my glasses was a feat itself.  They pressed so hard, I had indentations around my eyes for hours afterwards.  But I was determined to see where I was going.

We left our supporters at the base of the third and final zip wire.  They would know we were coming from the reverberations of the wires.

Onto the bus to be taken way up to the first of the three wires.  It was freezing by now, but at least it had stopped raining.  We were told that this was the longest but slowest of the three.  We were strapped into our seats and connected to the wires.  All four bears were tucked snugly away.  Maude was with Steve, Cuddles with Jo, Murphy with me and Alf with Jess’s Auntie Sue.  All the staff wanted to know what the bears signified.

There we were poised behind the metal gate which would spring back to release us into the void.  The wait seemed interminable, but suddenly we heard ‘Three, two, one’ and we were off.  My immediate thought was ‘whoaaaaaaaa’, and I think I probably screamed it too.

Titan 7         DCIM110_VIRB

The wind was trying to turn me round, so I manipulated the straps as we had been told and soon I could see where I was going.  I could see the others.  Steve and Sue were already well ahead, with Jo and I bringing up the rear. It really did not seem to be that fast.  But thirty seconds later we hit the block at the end of the run and were hauled in to clear the wires.

All the others followed us down.  The bears welcoming everyone as they arrived.

We were all shouting to one another. ‘That was great’. ‘I want to do it again’. ‘What a great view’.  Not one of us wanted to stop there without doing the next two wires.  From here we had to walk to the next zip wire station.  I brought up the rear, wiping out everyone’s footprints with my overalls.

Wire number two was steeper and faster and was over the quarry.  Because you were so far from the ground it seemed much faster.  Just before we were strapped in, the sun came out.  The wet grey slate beneath now shone up at us.

Finally, we were at number three wire.  We were told this was the fastest.  We could see our supporters at the bottom.  They knew we were next down.  And away we went, the fearless Muskebears and their transporters.

This time we all had the confidence to let go of the straps and to wave as we went over the spectators.  Going faster, we hit the block with such force that I felt I was going to somersault over the wire.  We were all laughing like fools and wanting to go back up and do it again.

Jess and Ruby had been waiting for us and were both nearly frozen.  We all had so much adrenaline, we were not feeling the cold.  We handed back out kit and went for a hearty bowl of soup in the café.  While we were all thawing out, I went around with my recorder asking what people had thought of the experience.  With no exceptions, everyone had thoroughly enjoyed themselves and were thrilled they were raising money for good causes.

These were some of the comments:

 Meg and Tom thought it has been really cool and wanted to do it again.

 The views were breath-taking.

 The second wire was the most exhilarating.

 We need coffee to warm up now

 Fantastic.  I want to do Velocity now.

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 Totally awesome

 It was amazing.  I wanted to do it again straight away.

 Fantastic experience.

On the journey home, Steve and I discussed what we could do next.  We both want to do the Velocity Zip Wire, which is faster and longer than Titan.  We will even consider a tandem parachute jump, but only if they partner us with someone professional.  Be warned, we may be after you for sponsorship money again next year.

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Your Voice Christmas 2018

This edition of Your Voice has a festive feel – download your copy below!

You will find out how to get your hands on SDN’s Christmas Cards – with designs by Members – and how people with and without disabilities can enjoy a creative Christmas carol service. There is an invitation to the final SDN Members’ Meeting of the year – come along in festive dress if you wish!

We thank our brilliant volunteers, fundraisers and supporters, and we look forward to making a difference together again in the year ahead. We also touch on serious topics of safeguarding and hate crime, as well as, different opportunities to learn more about your NHS or about your local gravestones.

There are features, too, on a successful scheme to put unsold food from supermarkets to good use and on new funding for services for people with deafness and hearing loss in Shropshire.

Log in to the Members’ Area at the top right-hand side of this page, and then download your copy of Your Voice by clicking on the link below. If you have suggestions for future editions, please email [email protected] . All comments welcome!

Your Voice Christmas 2018

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Shropshire Disability Network Meeting-Thursday 13th December 2018

We hope many of you will join us this Thursday for our last meeting of 2018. It takes place at The Movement Centre, Building 106, Robert Jones & Agnes Hunt District Orthopaedic Hospital, Gobowen, Oswestry SY10 7AG. Networking 10.30 am to 11 am. The meeting starts at 11 am and will finish by 1 pm.

Not only will we have 2 informative speakers to welcome, we also look forward to having Janine Loxton, Community Banker with Nat West Bank joining us. She will have an information stall with a wealth of information about Scam Awareness.

We have two special guest speakers. They are:

Richard Dunhill, who will talk about the work of the Samaritans and
Liz Downes from The Sequal Trust. Special Equipment and Aids for Living. The Sequal Trust, a national fundraising Charity founded in 1969 which is committed to bridging the communication gap for disabled people. By providing suitable assistive technology to people who need it most, we aim to increase the quality of life for those who are non-verbal, have incoherent speech, or who have learning and communication difficulties.

Raffle: We will hold our regular quarterly raffle and have SDN wrist bands for sale. By buying these you help us to fund our work. We will also have a table where you can buy items made by our members as well as other items. They are all very reasonably priced and will help towards paying for our meeting.

Please make this a festive meeting so if you wish to wear a Christmas jumper, please do.

We will also have our Christmas cards available at a specially discounted price!!! We will also have some items suitable for gifts that you can buy.

Email: [email protected] (Secretary) or call or text 07398 350 255 (SDN Secretary Mobile Number) for more information.
We have Sign Language Interpreters (BSL) at all our meetings. We now have a t-loop system to use at our meetings.

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Local Giving Day-Grow Your Tenner, Tuesday 11th December 2018

Today Local Giving campaign, kicks off at 10am, 11th December 2018, (we) Shropshire Disability Network will have the opportunity to benefit from doubled monthly donations for a full 6 months. 

Anyone wishing to support our charity can set up a direct debit of up to £10 during Grow Your Tenner 2018 will have their donations matched for 6 months (after an initial 6 months of unmatched donations. The campaign will run until the match funding is fully allocated or 12am on Thursday the 10th January – whichever comes first. 

To donate to us click here:

Local Giving Rules:

  • Supporter limits: Each supporter may set up one Direct Debit donation to a Localgiving member they wish to support through the campaign. No more than one Direct Debit may be set up per individual to each Localgiving member, but a supporter may donate to as many charities as they wish.
  • Charity limits: Each charity may receive up to £5,000 match funding. Donations to the charity will be matched until their limits are hit or match funding has run out, or the campaign ends.  
  • Match fund size: We have a match fund pot of £100,000.

To find out more about Local Giving click here:

To donate to us click here:

Shropshire Disability Network wishes to thank all who support our charity by donating financially or by giving their time to us.



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Your Voice October-November 2018

This edition of Your Voice brings you information about help with heating, accessible training in historical research, photography for wellbeing, a TV cookery competition, warding off flu, children’s mental health services, and an inclusive carol service.

It also updates you on Shropshire Disability Network and Safe Places Shropshire’s activities, including, a “high-flying” fundraising challenge.

Log in to the Members’ Area at the top right-hand side of this page, and then download your copy of Your Voice by clicking on the link below. If you have suggestions for future editions, please email [email protected] . Happy reading!

Your Voice October-November 2018

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Charity Titan Zip Wire Challenge, October 2018 by Ann Shaw, Secretary SDN

Titan Zip Wire Blog

Part One

My friend Jess is a very brave person.  She continually pushes the boundaries of what people believe a person living with disabilities can achieve.  She has published 3 books with her mum, Jo.  She has won a gold medal for playing Boccia in the Special Olympics, despite only taking up the sport recently.

Each year she raises money for charity by challenging her mum to take part in something that takes Jo out of her comfort zone.  Last year it was abseiling down the MK Dons’ stadium in Milton Keynes.

I had no idea that I would be so closely involved with this year’s challenge – the Titan Zip Wire Challenge in North Wales.  Jess wanted to raise £1500 to be shared equally between Guide Dogs (for whom she volunteers), Macintyre (they provide care for Jess) and Shropshire Disability Network (SDN).

Jess was bitterly disappointed to learn that she would not be able to take part on the day.  The organisers have strict medical guidelines, and, because of Jess’s eye problem, she found out she would be excluded.  This was where I came in.

Back in February, I think I must have been feeling particularly rash.  When Jo mentioned a zip wire event in October, I signed up straight away.  I also signed my husband Allan up.  If I was doing it, so could he.  At least that was what I thought.

Jess and I both have a ‘thing’ about teddy bears.  Cuddles is her constant companion and my house bears are Murphy and Alf.  They became our mascots – the Three Muskebears.  The idea was that they would take part in the zip wire, tucked down our overalls.

If any of you have seen the video on the Titan Zip Wire website, you will know that participants take part in groups of four.  The search was on for a fourth brave bear.  Maude was found lurking in a charity shop.  She had the sort of face that said, ‘pick me’.  So, I did.

 We decided quite early on that the mascots would wear the colours of each charity – purple for Macintyre, Blue for Guide Dogs, Pink for SDN and orange for Safe Places (part of SDN).  Luckily, I can turn my hand to most things.  I made the t-shirts that the bears would wear on the day.  They all looked very smart.

The following seven months came and went, and, to be honest, I didn’t really think too much about what we were doing in October.  Suddenly, I realised the day was nearly here and I had done nothing to raise any sponsorship money for the three charities.  I soon put that right and was amazed at the generosity of my friends and colleagues.  I’m sure many of them just wanted to see me throw myself down Snowdon.

Two weeks before the big day, Allan backed out.  His fear of heights was too much for him.  He thought that I, too, would chicken out when I was presented with the zip wire.  What would happen next?

 Look out for part 2 of this blog to find out whether I made it.

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Countdown – SDN Auction goes online.

You have only 1 day to wait before you can bid online on the various vouchers that have kindly been donated by organisations and members of the public in Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin.

Why not check out our Facebook page: Pick up some fabulous Christmas presents for family and friends.

Do you know anyone called Ann who would like a personalised number plate? Or what about the use of a luxury Audi for a weekend?

Take a look and make an offer on the item you would like? Happy bidding everyone!

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SDN Auction-This Saturday (20th October) You won’t want to miss this one!

Whether you fancy driving a luxury Audi for a weekend or buy a personalised number plate MG52 Ann, or may be treat yourself to a cut glass bowl full of chocolates we have a variety of items to Auction this Saturday 6 pm at Radbrook Community Centre, Calverton Way, Shrewsbury SY3 6DJ. With browsing starting from 5 pm -6 pm you will have the opportunity to see what we have to offer-from a new hair do by a professional hairdresser in Telford, to treating yourself to a special bottle of wine or a CD set signed by Tallon, this is the Auction you will not want to miss. How about a day at a Brewery or bidding on a gift set…..

While SDN has the right to withdraw items from sale, there is so much to offer. This is the list, that we have so far:

There will be a silent auction. Refreshments will be available during the evening. On arrival you will be offered a complimentary glass of wine.

We thank everyone who has kindly donated to our fundraising event.



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Jess’s Gang-4 Muskebears and 22 Brave Volunteers, did it.

Great news- On 6th October, Jess’s Gang completed the longest Zip Wire in Europe taking on the challenge Jess set for this year. 

We are appreciate all that Jess is doing for McIntyre Care, Guide Dogs and for us at Shropshire Disability Network. The target to raise £1500 is almost there, as donations are being collected in. It may be that you intended to sponsor but have not sponsored yet. Every £1 donation helps Jess her target to be shared between the three charities. It is not too late people can still sponsor this event at this link:

If you missed the story so far, click on each link below:

3 Muskebears, 22 Brave Volunteers, raising funds for 3 charities!

How 3 became 4. An update on Jess’s Gang -Titan Challenge.

A Message from Jess-10 days to go!

Jess leads Jess’s Gang at the Challenge she set.